MLS All-Star Referee: Jair Marrufo

So, in many ways, MLS has much more in common with American sports like baseball and basketball than they do with European club football.

Witness the All-Star Game. Every summer, MLS pulls its best and brightest together for a single game. In other American sports, this game pits the best of the various conferences against each other.

Since MLS isn’t that big, the MLS All-Stars face off with a European club, who are usually on international tour and are usually English.

This year, the MLS All-Stars welcome the German juggernaut Bayern Munich to Portland on August 6.

The referee will be Jair Marrufo. His assistants are Claudio Badea and Corey Parker, and Ismail Elfath is fourth official.

Marrufo is a bit of an enigma. He originally made the list of 38 for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, but had such a poor 2009-2010 season that MLS suspended him and he was removed from the World Cup list.

FIFA did appoint him to the 2013 Under-17 World Cup, though, where he refereed with the likes of Mark Clattenburg of England and Nestor Pitana of Argentina (who officiated at the 2014 World Cup).

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